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Featured Feb 11, 2020 6 min read

The data behind Fall 2020’s hottest menswear trends

Our in-house analysts decode the major trends from the Fall 2020 menswear shows. Read on for the products and styles that will see success through to next year.

menswear trends

The curtain closed on the men’s Fall 2020 shows last week, calling on buyers and designers worldwide to identify and interpret the most successful trends into their collections.

Our analyst team reviewed every look from the runway and applied their knowledge of what’s working commercially, so you know the winning styles to back. Want a head start on the competition? Read on as we present the trends that are going to be a hit next season, all confirmed by retail analytics. 

EDITED data influences how Zara, boohoo and Marni make decisions about top-performing trends. Get in touch to see our Retail Decision Platform in action.

Utility 

For Fall 2020, designers pursued the trend across conventional and luxury stories. The usual palette of khaki, olive and tapenade were present, but retailers looking to refresh this trend should consider lighter, cream and neutral tones. Key silhouettes moved from bottoms to outerwear with field jackets prominent. Premium retailers should take inspiration from the tailored leather designs at Dior Homme, while more technical designs at Y-Project offer an alternative, functional take. This trend also lent itself to footwear and accessories in the form of lace-up combat boots, cleated trail sneakers, bucket hats and backpacks.

Arrivals of products titled ‘utility’ have more than doubled YoY, with retailers in both the US and UK showing an increased interest in the trend within the bottoms category. This year, the market sees a flurry of new in cargo pants and short designs with boohooMAN, Hollister and Topman all investing in khaki and military-inspired looks. Interestingly, boohooMAN is combining athleisure and utility, with tracksuit sets displaying streetwear inspiration through the addition of patch pockets and straps.

menswear trends
Menswear Fall 2020

The wild west 

Lil Nas X was responsible for championing the Western trend for men with the release of ‘Old Town Road’ last year. He continued to channel cowboy vibes at the 2020 Grammy Awards along with Rosalía and Diplo. Even Pitti Uomo 97 was inundated with Western shirts, along with cowboy hats and boots. All strong indicators this trend has longevity. Outerwear took center stage for this theme on the runway, highlighting suede and leather as key fabrications at the likes of Dsquared2 and Etro. Denim was also featured prominently and is a safe category to invest in for this trend.

While Western themes traditionally have been slower to resonate in menswear, the mass market is catching on. Comparing the last six months to the previous period, products described as ‘Western’ or ‘cowboy’ increased by 14%. Denim and checked shirting are currently where the majority of retailers are investing. However, there is vast scope for outerwear, especially for suede. Look to details such as embroidery, fringing and piping to subtly introduce the trend to your range. 

Sports and loungewear

The Fall 2020 shows further solidified the continuation of this trend with tracksuits, sneakers and fanny packs taking center stage. The traditional sportswear aesthetic consisting of technical fabrications, neon hues, color blocking and bold branding was still present. However, a softer and more subtle iteration of the trend emerged at Dolce & Gabbana, A-COLD-WALL* and Jacquemus. These designers prioritized loungewear with hoodies and comfy two-piece co-ords, as well as softer color palettes of grey and beige hues with an injection of pastel. 

The shift towards loungewear has already proven significant as health and wellness becomes a key focus for menswear this year. 

Two years ago, the men’s loungewear market was untapped and saw minimal investment. Now the term is attached to 24% more products compared to 2018. Recent January arrivals further supported the story. Both Zara and Topman have invested in neutral tones. The latter opting for a set of a short-sleeve and shorts rather than the typical jacket and jogger combo. 

Additionally, powder hues continued to gain momentum in menswear outside of athleisure and were noted in puffer jackets and suiting, while knitwear makes for a commercial option. Alternatively, accessories such as bucket hats and backpacks offer a low-risk investment.

Check out how the four cities’ color palettes boiled down in comparison to the last two seasons:

menswear trends

Our image recognition software detects the color of every product online so retailers have full visibility of the seasonal hues to invest in. Reach out to a Retail Expert to see our color wheel in action.

White sneakers remain the most versatile footwear styles in the market and lend themselves to more themes than just athleisure. The classic, modern white trainer remained predominant during Men’s Fashion Week. While low-top styles prevailed on the runway, street style took the trend in another direction.  High-top designs were preferred, which complemented utility stories and sporty looks. Consider using weatherproof materials for a high-top sneaker as customers look to wear the sneaker trend year-round.

Retro vibes

Nostalgia prevailed as an overarching theme on the runway and within attendee street style. Reminiscent of the ‘60s and ‘70s, colorways such as ochre, burnt orange and tobacco were highlighted at Fendi, Wales Bonner and Amiri. Silhouettes nodding to eras past such as turtlenecks, Mod cardigans, tailored trousers and wide-lapel blazers were out in full force. 

Tie-dye reemerged as one of the strongest prints and will continue to trend across streetwear brands, taking influence from skateboard culture. On the runway, the strongest application of this pattern included double denim co-ords as seen at MSGM and silk shirting as per PRONOUNCE.

Looking at the current state of the market, the US saw the biggest investment of tie-dye for SS20 with American Eagle Outfitters leading the way. Tops dominate this category, making up 78% of all arrivals in both long and short-sleeve styles. Arrivals for January are already up by 77% compared to last year, with retailers continuing to invest. It’s safe to say tie-dye is not just a fad, but an important print trend moving forward.

Work-life balance

This season saw more of a focus on suiting. Even streetwear dominant designers such as Off-White showcased a range of two-piece suits. Grey and Glen plaid were key patterns for suits and turtlenecks as a popular pairing. They were worn in place of a shirt to capture a smart, casual aesthetic that appeals to a range of consumers. Loafers were also a popular footwear choice for designers with styles updated on the runway with shiny patent leather uppers, zippers and buckle bars. Cleated soles were added for a more utilitarian-inspired look.  

Casual workwear was represented on the runway with smart cardigans paired with cropped, straight leg trousers, and cozy sweaters and hoodies were styled with loose trousers for a relaxed silhouette. As more people work from home and freelance, retailers should start utilizing this theme to promote more casual workwear pieces to their consumers.

For full coverage and analysis of the runway shows, log in to read our Menswear: Fall 2020 Cheat Sheet.

Contributions by Katherine Bailey, Katharine Carter, Krista Corrigan, Tara Drury, Ashley Graham, Heather Ibberson and Kayla Marci.